With every project that we undertake at DaRa, we look to improve and further refine our manufacturing process. Both our design and engineering teams look to meet the needs of our clients, whether they require 32A load centres or 3,200A motor control centres.
When designing a custom switchboard for our clients, there are a number of steps to the process. One of the most crucial is the material your custom switchboard will be fabricated from, which is why we’ve created this helpful guide to give you a headstart on the design process.
Why is it important to choose the right material for a custom switchboard?
Depending on the type of switchboard and where it will be located, we may recommend a number of different materials for use in fabrication. To maximise the longevity of the product, the right material is vital.
For example, a switchboard that will be exposed to environments with a high risk of corrosion requires durable metal with superior fatigue and resistance properties. For aquatic environments, DaRa Switchboards uses Sealium marine-grade aluminium to prevent wear and tear.
What materials do DaRa Switchboards offer?
At DaRa, we utilise many different types of alloy steel for manufacturing our custom enclosures. These include:
- 304 stainless
- 316 stainless
- Cold rolled
- Marine-grade Sealium
Is there a significant difference between 304 and 316 stainless steel?
Yes. From a chemical perspective, molybdenum is the primary difference between 304 and 316, an addition that offers high levels of weldability, aesthetic appeal and, crucially, corrosion resistance.
This means that 316 stainless steel is adaptable to both indoor and outdoor applications where chemicals are present in the environment.
For environments that won’t pose a risk to the integrity of the enclosure, we may recommend 304 stainless steel, a more affordable alternative. However, where appropriate, we stress the importance of 316 stainless – despite the higher initial cost, the wrong material in a corrosive environment will lead to expensive maintenance, upkeep and potential replacement over time.
the wrong material in a corrosive environment will lead to expensive maintenance, upkeep and potential replacement.
Are there other factors to consider?
Our design team will work with you to assess the operating environment and conditions to determine factors such as thermal or UV protection, wind and storm resistance for diverse loading conditions and the salt or chemical agents that may be present.
The aim of our design process is to create the perfect custom switchboard for your needs – with minimum ongoing costs.
Get in touch with our team
To learn more about our custom switchboard design process, contact our team today. At DaRa, we’re switched on to give power to you.